By: Oberst Von Berauscht (Four Beers) –
Shortly after the events of the first film, the Angry Bird Red is still protecting his island from incursions by the Pigs, and has been made a hero by the village because of it. Unfortunately a new threat now looms that causes the Pigs to declare a truce, and Red fears for his hero status, as he feels that’s all he has going for him (he was never that well liked before the whole “hero” thing). A third island called Eagle Island is sending balls of ice crashing down on both islands, with a mysterious Eagle enemy seemingly bent on their destruction. Can Bird and Pig learn to work together to take on this new enemy?
…….. is that a yes?
The highlight of the film is the clever comic writing. Without a clear dramatic focus, the screenwriters seem to have instead choose to fill the movie with numerous random comic setpieces to keep things interesting. They hit more than they miss, and while it’s not recommended as a sustainable way to make a feature film, the “spaghetti at the wall” approach is fairly well served here. While just as many jokes miss as strike, they are so quickly tossed at you that you often don’t notice the stinkers.
Was that a fart joke?
The movie moves along at a fast pace, but one that leaves little time for developing the central conflict at hand. What we get instead is a series of comic sequences, many of which do hit their mark, but without a coherent element to tie things down. Sadly, one of the film’s trailers completely spoils one of the film’s best scenes by essentially making the entire trailer that scene. I won’t go into details, as those who avoided the trailer will likely still find much to appreciate about the sequence. But given how heavily the movie was being marketed, it left me wanting when the funniest part of the movie is something I’ve had to watch as a prelude to nearly every theater-going film experience I’ve had in the last 2 months.
The thin strands of what counts for a story in this film is barely enough to hold itself together. This is best evidenced by the crazed villain of Zeta (Leslie Jones), whose self-serving goal of driving the birds and pigs away from their island so she can take both of them for herself is undercut by a finale that basically dismissing all stakes from the story in the name of a quick wrap-up. There is no reason whatsoever to invest in the story, as there really isn’t much of one anyway.
But who cares, because this bird dressed as a pig is cute, and that’s all that matters right?
The same complaint I had about the first Angry Birds movie holds true here in the sequel. These simply aren’t the same Angry Birds of the video game, but instead they’re newly-written characters who happen to have the body types of various Angry Birds characters. They did it best with the short cartoons, where the Angry Birds were dialogue-free and focused on Warner Brothers-style slapstick humor. The Bird-Pig relationship is a simple premise that is best suited to the short form. The moment you try and bring a longer story, you’re immediately faced with the choices of padding.
Angry Birds Movie 2 is an improvement over the first film. But it is still incredibly slight compared to competing animation studio efforts.
Angry Birds Movie 2 (2019) Movie Drinking Game
Take a Drink: every time the baby bird subplot reappears
Do a Shot: for bodily function humor
Do a Shot: for modern pop songs
Take a Drink: whenever “Eagle” is said